When Life Comes Before Writing

Although I often quip that writing is  my life, there are some times when life comes before my writing. This is one of those times. For the past several months, I have been dealing with the latest in a long list of medical issues that have plagued my younger daughter. Issues that were supposed to be resolved on March 16th with surgery on her back. Unfortunately, once she was under sedation, they discovered more problems that resulted in the surgery being postponed until they are resolved. Which necessitated more appointments with more doctors and specialists, all without the convenience of my own car. As fate would have it, my car started succumbing to many little issues a couple of weeks before the scheduled surgery, so I have been forced to find rides to all of my daughter’s appointments. Not fun, but I did it.

So for the past several weeks, my life has been consumed with doctors’ visits and attempts to get a replacement car – and the sheer frustration of not being able to do what I want when I want to because of the lack of a car. For instance, my sister was in the hospital Easter weekend having kidney stones surgically removed, but I couldn’t visit her because I had no way to get there. My older daughter needs to come back on the 29th for an orthodontist appointment and then she is out for the summer on May 18th and I worry that I won’t have a way to get her here. And let’s not get into the inconvenience of not being able to shop without depending on someone else for a ride. Which wouldn’t be so bad if the two people I would call for that purpose weren’t having car issues themselves.

So instead of writing, I am worrying. About how I am going to get my younger daughter to her next appointment; about how I am going to get my older daughter home from college; and about how I am going to get a new car. Believe me, I would much rather be throwing these problems at my characters and making their lives more difficult (for creative purposes) than scrambling for the resources to purchase a new car. I would rather be lost in the fantasy of my written world than mired in the issues of my real world. But, sometimes, life comes before writing.


Filed under writing

7 responses to “When Life Comes Before Writing

  1. Wow, Margay, you certainly have been saddled with more than your share of misfortune.

    Like you, I find it difficult in times of unrest to lose myself in my fiction; still, it is important that you be good to yourself. Maybe writing isn’t an option to you at the moment, but one of my prayers for you is that you can find a few moments somewhere during which you can do something that brings you comfort and a brief respite to your current troubles.

    Take comfort, too, in knowing that others understand what you are going through and are pulling for you to get to a better place.

  2. Margay

    J Conrad, it has been quite a journey thus far, I can tell you that. And I’m hoping that, by writing it down, it doesn’t seem as bad as it does inside my head. Thank you for your kind words, they are much appreciated.

  3. Life comes before writing for me, too. People say: a writer writes, always, but that simply is not true. Besides the sheer impossibility of it, a writer also lives. And, unfortunately, that living is often pleasant and fraught with worry. I hope you find a solution to your troubles.

  4. What is the quote? “Life is what happens while we are making other plans.” Being car-less in a society which has been totally organized around cars is VERY difficult, and even agonizing. I’ve been alone in a rural area with two small children with the single car gone all day with commuter husband, and that required lots of planning. Occasionally, like the time I had a massive allergic reaction and was well along on the road to losing all autonomic functions (little stuff like breathing and heart beats) and had to get on the phone and convince someone I barely knew to take me to the hospital–it was dangerous. You have my sympathy, ’cause I know something of what you are going through–and I wish I lived nearer so I could help out! (Bloody cars!)

  5. christinehusom

    So sorry for all you’ve been going through with your daughter’s battles.

    We’ve had some car issues these last couple of months. My husband crashed his car–slid on ice during a storm and ended up part way under an SUV–not hurt, but car was totaled. My oldest daughter had her car parked on the street outside her apt in St Paul–someone hit it one night–hit and run. It was an older car so she didn’t have collision coverage, so she was out. She found a nice used car, had it less than 2 weeks and got in a crash–she was fine, but car was totaled. She has a rental car now while she searches for another car and–I am not kidding–someone hit it and took off the back bumper. What a string of unlucky car things in about 4 weeks!

    It is hard to be creative and find time for writing when life gets in the way. I hope you can more than make up for it when things settle down. I consider myself a writer, but one who does not always write.

  6. Christine: Your story sounds like a script for a sitcom. Although far from humorous for you and your husband and daughter, perhaps it will be, in time, when you look back at this string of misfortune!

  7. christinehusom

    J Conrad, the days of my life vary between soap opera scripts and sitcom scripts! That’s why faith and humor are my friends 🙂

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